Tuesday, September 11, 2012

Why Do You Think the Way You Think?

Many people wonder why someone is the way they are. Well, everyone's life is a journey, and everyone walks different paths. I am the way I am because of the thing I've gone through in life, and the same goes for anyone else.

Many may wonder why I feel so strongly the way I do about religion, especially Christianity (the extreme religious part of it.) I didn't necessarily "grow up in church" - but I was sent to church's or drug to church's. I was always the outcast even at church. The church I remember spending the most time in, and dreading it every time because I knew I'd just be alone and bored, was my stepdad's church. But I've seen it in other church's as I've grown up.

I feel the way I do about these so-called Christians because I got a regular dose of them growing up, and even as a young adult. I was bullied daily in school by a large sum of the student body for no apparent reason. And a large sum of those kids claimed to be Christian. I was never befriended or had anyone try to love me in many of the church's I attended growing up. My mom tried to get me into a private Christian school in our town because of the crap I was dealing with in public school... I got turned away, and their reason was my mom wasn't a regular church attendee. Not that she wasn't a believer mind you, she just didn't attend church regularly.

So because of what I went through growing up, I have been able to open my mind to other people who deal with the same issues - being bullied, harassed, or criticized by the Christian-right. Being turned away by these people because they don't "fit" their "Christian" criteria. Well I know now that Jesus will never turn me or anyone else away.

And I see the kids who have "grown up in church" and been accepted all their lives... and a l
ot of them have grown into the fundamentalist, the Christian-right we know today. With their "my way or the high way" option. Their "love the sinner, hate the sin" euphemism. And just like in high school, their still the "popular" crowd. True Christians, who try to walk the talk, are the minority. We were stomped on then, and we're stomped on now. If we raise a rebuttal against their point of views, we're laughed at or pushed back... we're automatically wrong, and given no merit whatsoever.

Even though our answers come from the Bible, and are actually within context of the writings, and not just one single verse picked out of the middle of a book and chapter, they hold no value. What they have been told by their teachers, preachers, parents (other human beings) holds way more weight than taking the Bible at it's word and meaning. Frankly, it makes no sense. And it only gets worse when they use their misguided, misinterpreted views of the scriptures to judge or harm others - and that's where I know that their "translation" of the verses are wrong - because Jesus never intended for us to use his words or the words of his disciples or apostles to criticize another or point fingers.

Photo: Life is so much simpler when you check your brain at the door of religion and let others tell you how to think, how to believe, what to wear, how to spend your money, how to love, how to feel, how much sex to have and with who...
I mean it simply is so much easier to live that way then to actually think for yourself, to grow up and get your own hands dirty digging for the truth. But the reward is great once you can sit under your own vine and rest in God, knowing all is truly well and All are safely tucked in His big Heart of Love.
~ Juli Walt 
image by nakedpastorOpening up a book of the bible, going to a random chapter, and picking out a random verse or line to validate your claim is not what it was intended for. Those books, chapters, and passages were written with a point, a lesson. And the lesson comes from reading the whole entire thing, not just one piece. The practice of quoting out of context, or quote mining, is a fallacy - a type of false attribution in which a passage is removed from it's surrounding content in a way that distorts it's intended meaning. This is also known as cherry picking, or suppressing evidence.

And the more I heard this and saw this, the more frustrated and further away from God I got, until he finally said "enough" and got me the heck out of there, and started leading me back to him by showing me his way, his truth, and his light.

The fact is, I think the way I think because I'm stuck in my head... and other people think they way think because they're stuck in their's - and their upbringing, experiences, education (or lack there of), influences, friends, and family have sculpted them so that they think the way they think. One's willingness to open their mind, or stubbornness to keep it closed, is the final piece. We all have had our thoughts and minds shaped into a box - now the question is can we think on our own? Can we think outside the box?

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